San Diego Mesa College

Leroy Johnson (

Charlie Lieu (


In an effort to create a more comprehensive intake process, San Diego Mesa College recently developed “Your Mesa Journey,” an online intake survey that both gathers critical student data and uses that data to recommend relevant student service programs to incoming students.

To inform the design and functionality of this online process, a cross-sectional team of student service personnel took stock of student needs and current college offerings by assessing feedback from the Mesa Student Service Committee, testimonials from students, and a thorough review of student service programs. With this feedback in hand, the team concluded that a shorter survey featuring accessible language and engaging visuals would serve students best. They now have a 10-question survey (down from 35 questions) that generates a custom list of programs, services, and resources for students to explore upon enrolling.

The San Diego Mesa College team highlighted several lessons learned from this endeavor including:

  • Leveraging a cross-section of student service personnel in creating the intake process helps to ensure a full grasp of all the programs and opportunities a college offers
  • Enlisting a web developer who is able to execute the vision of the student service team
  • Focusing on student usability by making the process mobile-friendly, cleaning up program landing pages, and using language/content that students understand helps and encourages students to fully engage with the online intake process

While the team is pleased with the progress it’s made in reforming its comprehensive intake process, they acknowledged that there are lingering issues and questions to address as they move into the next phase of this work.

On the one hand, the San Diego Mesa College team is keen to further refine “Your Mesa Journey” by adding updated and additional questions, including information about instructional programs, and systematizing the management of the student data captured through the process so they become more readily actionable. On the other hand, they are also grappling with bigger-picture questions about how “Journey” fits alongside other pathway navigation processes and how to promote the product among students and staff.

Video Highlights from February 25, 2019 Community of Practice Meeting

The challenge of knowing everything offered on a campus

Data and input that informed this work

Refining the intake survey